Sunday, November 18, 2012

It's Today

I live in fear of the phrase "Back in my day,". Not because I have a secret terror of hearing a nostalgia laced story that I've almost certainly heard before, but because of what the phrase represents. Unlike its cousins "When I was a kid," "When I was in college," "Back when my kids were little," the phrase is some amorphous indicator of a bygone time when the speaker felt relevant--and a sure sign that they no longer feel so.

At some point, people seem to feel that they are guests in a world that no longer belongs to them. Some feel it after some random age that they've ascribed for themselves--30 used to be the popular choice, although it's been recently taken over by 40. Others feel it when they have kids or grandkids. Still others walk past the display of People and US Weekly, fail to recognize anyone on the cover, and decide that they've passed the point of the target audience, and therefore, have seceded their "day".

When you relegate your "day" to the past, you're letting go of the world. If the "day" belongs to someone else, it means you know longer are an active participant in the world. You're as much a relic as the giant statue of Ben in the Franklin Institute, nothing more than a slightly chattier testament to history.

Here's the true story though: Today is your day. If you are alive to read this, then you are as relevant as you choose to be. Deciding to cut ties with the events and technologies of the world is relegating yourself to a supporting role at best. Human beings get a measly amount of time for a "day" before we go into that good night, so there's no point on embracing the sunset before we have to. Fight to be a part of the world today.

Because it's yours.

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